Debuting at Toronto Film Festival 2015, Our Last Tango (original title: Un Tango Más) explores the partnership with Maria Nieves Rego and Juan Carlo Copes, two dancers who helped popularise Argentine Tango during a 50-year partnership. Through a group of young dancers, the duo reflects on their history on and off the stage.
With Buena Vista Social Club director Wim Wenders as executive producer, director German Kral ensures that dance is the core of the documentary. While it explores the history of Argentine Tango and its humble roots, the film sees how Nieves and Copes take the dance from local nightclubs to Broadway, popularising for the international scene. Combined with key memories re-enacted through a group of dancers, the tango sequences are mesmerising and beautifully choreographed, bringing a stylised grace that is both unique and technical at the same time.
The idea of delving into the relationship between Nieves and Copes with Argentine Tango as a backdrop is almost ironic; amid a deeply emotional dance, which relies on a strong connection, is a partnership that blossomed into love, only for it to disintegrate to hate. The narratives are driven mainly through Nieves, who met and fell in love with Copes when she was 14. Now 83, her profound memories of their partnership open up a myriad of emotions that range from sentimental to embittered, leaving her as the more vulnerable partner of the piece.
Copes, however, comes across as somewhat flippant; while his passion for tango encourages the pair to extend their act internationally, his closed-off attitude towards a romantic future with Maria shows that his priorities – and his heart – belong elsewhere, sealing the duo’s inevitable future.
Overall, Our Last Tango is an insightful, intimate celebration of not only Argentine Tango but one of its most renowned couples.
Our Last Tango is out in UK cinemas on 22 September.
Director: German Kral
Stars: Maria Nieves Rego, Juan Carlos Copes, Pablo Verón
Runtime: 85 minutes
Country: Argentina, Germany